Aug 23, 2022 - Politics & Policy

S.D. Gov. Kristi Noem accused of "misconduct" by ethics board

 South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem adjusts her notes.
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem adjusts her notes at an NRA convention. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem may have "engaged in misconduct" when she got involved in her daughter's application for a real estate appraiser license in 2020, a South Dakota ethics board said Monday, AP reports.

Why it matters: The board's comments come amid an ongoing investigation into Noem, a potential 2024 presidential candidate who has been accused of abusing her power in office. She has denied any wrongdoing.

Catch up quick: Accusations against Noem began after she held a meeting with an employee of the state's appraiser certification program back in 2020, Axios' Jacob Knutson reports.

  • Noem's daughter's application for a certified real estate appraiser license was denied days before the meeting, per AP.
  • Not long after the meeting, Noem's daughter received her certificate.
  • South Dakota's labor secretary, who was at the meeting, later called for the employee to retire.

Driving the news: The Government Accountability Board said that there should be "appropriate action" taken against Noem for her role in helping her daughter receive the license, AP reports.

  • She was also accused of "misconduct," “conflicts of interest” and “malfeasance."
  • The board of three retired judges did not specify what actions should be taken.
  • The GAB did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

What's next: The board said it would begin the process of allowing Noem to defend herself, per AP.

  • No date or specific details were given about when that will happen.

Yes, but: The board said it would refer a complaint about Noem using the state plane for campaign and personal reasons back to the attorney general's office, per Dakota News Now.

  • Former Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg originally made the complaints against Noem.

The big picture: Noem is seeking re-election in the 2022 midterms. She has been seen as a potential 2024 presidential candidate after drawing support from former President Trump and for her criticisms of the Biden administration.

Go deeper: How South Dakota became a global tax haven

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